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Poster: William Tell Date: Feb 4, 2008 2:46pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: "Influence" vs "Popular" (DEAD)

LA Woman and I are in the middle of a tif about this point in the "album's" thread below and it stimulated me a bit...here goes.

There is a big difference between these two issues. "Talent" is another one. When I say Syd B was influential, I mean it in a sense that you could take everything that PF did in the 70s and throw it away because the real influence of them was established with what he did with the first two albums. Sure, the 70s stuff was "better" but that has little to do with "influential" in many cases.

Another example: it matters not that Rob, Arb, Earl and Ashes and I could form a band and I am sure, write songs that are as good as any Buddy Holly ever did. We could probably learn to play better than he and the crickets, and with the techno advances of the past forty years, clearly surpass them in "talent." However, the fact is that Holly did what he did at the time that he did, and literally all 3 min rock songs of the sixties derive something from him (and him from those before him, BUT he combined "influence" with "popularity" and those before him did not).

The DEAD also were hugely influential, primarily in my view due to the contributions of Hunter and Garcia, with a bit of Lesh and the rhythm section thrown in. They were not ever popular, nor necessarily talented (except for Jerry and Hunter, Lesh...), but we are all here because of their status on the influential front...

Anyhow, back to defending Syd from LAW...

This post was modified by William Tell on 2008-02-04 22:46:51

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Poster: veblen Date: Feb 4, 2008 2:58pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

good post mr tell!!!

admittedly I have avoided even looking at the thread since I had a feeling the posts would turn into what you mention.

I couldn't have said it better myself about syd, buddy or the dead.

And of course there are examples of this in every genere of music.



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Poster: Kryssy Fields Date: Feb 4, 2008 4:20pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

Where is Buck Owens in all of this ?

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Poster: jerkwaterdan Date: Feb 4, 2008 9:25pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

Buddy Holly was amazing Can you guys write a song like Buddy Holly that everyone will still be playing 50 years after you write it and still dig listening to it? If so, I would love to hear it. Songs like Rave On, Peggy Sue, That'll Be The Day, Not Fade Away, Maybe Baby, Oh Boy, True Love Ways, Eveyday...quite a legacy for a guy who was only around a couple of years.

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Poster: William Tell Date: Feb 5, 2008 7:00am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

Yep--couldn't agree more. I was really tongue in cheek there, BUT was taking that line since some folks view his writing as too simplistic, and yes, with hindsight, a decent songwriter might turn out similar songs now, BUT HE is the one that did it, and during that time period, etc., etc., etc.

As I started with this all, I really think that B Holly and S Barrett deserve a huge amt of credit for what they brought to the scene. Brian Jones was more of an icon, the coolness/hipness/feminine side of rock pre Donovan.

"His majesty
Prince Jones smiled as he
Moved among the crowd
Ten thousand electric guitars
Were groovin' real loud, yeah"

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Poster: blacklakelight Date: Feb 5, 2008 7:42am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

Floyd basically tanked after Syd. Although Floyd became hugely popular, I'd still say Syd's influence has been greater (from Bowie,Robyn Hitchcock,I'd say Marc Bolan's lyrics, also the paisley underground scene in the eighties, of which Mazzy Star is a remnant, and from which spawned the genius of Opal and Kendra Smith).

Actually, I take that back. I'd say Floyd has been influential, only not on any artists' I much like. I loved Pink Floyd in high school, Syd's two records as well as the rest. Now, though, those classics such as Wish, Animals,and Dark Side bore me on a musical level, and lyrically are too didactic to be of interest. That's just how I hear it, and have for a long time. I like Atom Heart better, parts of Meddle, don't think I'd see The Wall again, but couldn't imagine rock without it--ditto Live at Pompeii-- and I have a feeling The Final Cut might hold up well, although it's been years. That Momentary Lapse and all that went with it was awful, even in high school I couldn't dig it. Gilmour I think is a great guitarist.

There go my thoughts on Pink Floyd.

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Poster: William Tell Date: Feb 5, 2008 10:15am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

Thanks for the additions; I really am glad so many posted about Syd and PF in general. B Holly too.

Nice thread.

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Poster: bluedevil Date: Feb 5, 2008 10:31am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

You can't ignore the crickets - hell, the beatles stole/based their name on the same.

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Poster: William Tell Date: Feb 5, 2008 10:56am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: LMA allstars take to the road...

Yep--absolutely right, BD.

Okay, looks like we have an opening act: Dire wants to double as a roadie and an angst ridden acoustic guitar playing screamer, so why not? McGlone can also do double duty since he actually has talent, and a band. So, we have a tour with three acts...

First stop, the pharmacy for all the necessary scrips to keep us going, keep us awake, and keep us regular. Probably have to spend some time at SDH's "Desert Compound" to get "our minds right" and then we're off...

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Poster: SomeDarkHollow Date: Feb 5, 2008 11:11am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: LMA allstars take to the road...

Hey, who invited you to my "compound" anyway? I'm still trying to find places to hide all the firearms and "customized" religious texts. By the way, if you do show up and are met by folks wearing burlap sacks and DEVO hats, just tell them that you are looking for The Divine Prophet of the Cosmically Challenged Church of Drum Playing Retards and they'll come get me.

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Poster: William Tell Date: Feb 5, 2008 12:04pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: LMA allstars take to the road...

Well, you're Arb's back up driver for the bus, and you're the number one roadie on group defense with the keys to the arms locker in the back of bus (false compartment in the second bathroom [figured at our ages we need two toilets in the damn thing]), so I figured you were game.

But, now that I know you are taking drumming seriously, you can open on alternate nights from Dire with your "The Divine Prophet of the Cosmically Challenged Church of Drum Playing Retards" ensemble.

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Poster: direwolf0701 Date: Feb 5, 2008 12:12pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: LMA allstars take to the road...

very cool - maybe SDH's ensemble and I can do a few tunes together too. We can call our combined effort:



"The Divine Prophet of the Cosmically Challenged Church of Drum Playing Retards and The Sacred Cow"


will be good stuff, no doubt

TWAAANNNNGGGGGG (fuckin' string broke again)

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Poster: direwolf0701 Date: Feb 5, 2008 11:10am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: LMA allstars take to the road...

i surely hope you caught my Syd Barrett reference there WT (albeit, he did it with an electric)

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Poster: William Tell Date: Feb 5, 2008 12:07pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: LMA allstars take to the road...

Absolutely my friend, absolutely! Figure that a number of us will be "pulling a Syd" as the tour unfolds, but the problem will be that you won't know necessarily as we have so little talent it might actually be a great improvement whenever anyone of us wigs out and stands in the corner...I can see you and High Flow debating the point backstage now:

"Is Tell wasted or asleep?"

"Should we hit him again with SDH's Taser?"

"Better start loading the equipment on the bus; Rob is reciting lame Scottish poetry instead of playing his guitar and the crowd is throwing shit!"

"WTF?! Get the frickin' 9 mm; I just saw Earl's dad running off with two nubile girls and all the door receipts for the last three nights!"

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Poster: high flow Date: Feb 5, 2008 12:28pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: LMA allstars take to the road...

OK to all of this....BUT I get to play my harp on Big River and sing harmony on the "Catch a cannonball" verse in The Weight.

If I get to do that, I'll do all the heavy lifting.

OK??

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Poster: direwolf0701 Date: Feb 5, 2008 12:15pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: LMA allstars take to the road...

ROFLMFAO!!!!!!!!!!!

best post of the day


i can see it - i can most certainly see it


:)

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Poster: bluedevil Date: Feb 5, 2008 11:04am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: LMA allstars take to the road...

I'm up for this so long as we got a lot little teenage blue-eyed groupies who do anything we say and a genuine Indian guru teachin' us a better way.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ooX8nHa5rrc

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Poster: staggerleib Date: Feb 5, 2008 10:29am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

2 Cents time:
I love Pink Floyd. While I agree that on many levels, the music is simplistic, and the lyrical themes are somewhat trite, the music still speaks to me in a way that others simply do not. This is not necessarily a better/worse thing. I simply love Pink Floyd.

The Final Cut holds out for me better than most, maybe because I like roger. The Pros and Cons tour, with Clapton on guitar was one of the greatest concerts I ever saw.

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Poster: William Tell Date: Feb 5, 2008 6:19pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

Yep; I just listened to Piper and Saucer/secrets again. The music is often complex, though the lyrics are not (necessarily; some are great), but the overall effect, especially if one thinks back to 67-68, is utterly mindblowing.

What an important contribution. And fun.

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Poster: Ellis Van Sofa Date: Feb 4, 2008 3:24pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

don't knock Buddy Holly. he was as deep and influential as anyone on that list.

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Poster: William Tell Date: Feb 4, 2008 3:46pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

Sorry for the confusion--I couldn't agree more. I think he is one of THE top infuences for all of R&R.

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Poster: robthewordsmith Date: Feb 4, 2008 3:57pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

Master Tell, your points, as pretty much always, are good ones (and I’m tickled pink to be included in the Forum Allstars Band). Earl is right when he points out that the terms can get blurred. The thing to keep in mind about this list is that its ‘albums’ – not performers. An influential performers list would be somewhat different and would undoubtedly contain the names of Buddy Holly, Elvis Presley, Miles Davis, Robert Johnson, Chuck Berry, Jimi Hendrix and James Brown to name but a few. However, I do not believe that Jerry Garcia or the Grateful Dead would feature. Much though we might love them and have been influenced by them as individuals I can’t see that they’ve been very influential on the development of ‘popular’ music. "The Dead are not the best at what they do, they are the only ones who do what they do." – and really, as far as I can see, that never changed.

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Poster: William Tell Date: Feb 4, 2008 4:07pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

Agreed. And, relative to the point Stealz raises below, it does indeed blur...

Thanks.

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Poster: Earl B. Powell Date: Feb 4, 2008 3:21pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

Willy: Me thinks this has more to do with the lack of precision given the definitions we're using. My take on Syd isn't much different than LA's, however the BAND thought of him as "influential." I think it appropriate to go to the fountainhead when you're using the term. I'm sure the world would agree that they weren't universally popular until Atom Heart Mother (lol).

The crux of the matter is popularity vs. influence and I'll bet there are fewer than 20 examples where the music had both of those phenomena in equal proportions.

Talent is another one of those hooks that blurs the distinction between popularity and influence, as talent isn't necessarily a guarantee you'll achieve either.

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Poster: William Tell Date: Feb 4, 2008 3:47pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

Yeah, but are you game for the band we're forming? You're the hold out...

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Poster: bluedevil Date: Feb 4, 2008 3:59pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

word to the wise - give up your seat on the plane and take the bus instead. Worked out ok for Waylon Jennings....

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Poster: William Tell Date: Feb 4, 2008 4:08pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

Ha! As far as I have anything to do with it, Arb will be driving this bus of allstars (???). We plan to play only small venues, comfortable and with well cushioned seats. And the meds on the bus will be critical to the success of the tour.

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Poster: Earl B. Powell Date: Feb 4, 2008 4:16pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

Rehearsing Now.

Attachment: Picture_004.jpg

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Poster: William Tell Date: Feb 4, 2008 4:42pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

WTF?! You've been holding out on us; I can see it now--Jimmy Buffet and the Squirrels. We are sooo going to make it.

Keep it up--you are defn going to have to carry us...

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Poster: robthewordsmith Date: Feb 4, 2008 4:42pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

Hey Tell - doing my thing for the band ...




Attachment: DSCF0316.JPG

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Poster: direwolf0701 Date: Feb 5, 2008 8:48am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

oh my god!!!!

that is fucking classic Rob!!!!!!

awesome pic - made my day

:)

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Poster: robthewordsmith Date: Feb 5, 2008 9:05am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

Yeah - foolishly I though only Tell would see that pic...


So how you doing, big fella? Sorry your team lost the SuperBowl. I tried to follow some of the game over here but I have to admit I didn't have much of a clue as to what was going on. Sounded like a pretty nailbiting finish though.

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Poster: direwolf0701 Date: Feb 5, 2008 9:18am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

was a very tough loss to swallow :( yesterday was pretty depressing - this whole community was just at a loss. kinda funny when you think that football is only a stupid game. definitely felt like a funeral though.


glad you posted that pick though - made my day (it is gloomy here in mood and weather). i'm still trying to figure out if that is a wig or a small furry animal on your head though.

:)

how YOU doin brother??

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Poster: Kryssy Fields Date: Feb 5, 2008 10:02am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

I FOUND GINA...........

Attachment: it_s_a_secrest_00.wav.jpg

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Poster: direwolf0701 Date: Feb 5, 2008 10:07am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

lmao!!!

good one

(and kinda close huh?)

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Poster: William Tell Date: Feb 4, 2008 4:55pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

Outstanding! Robert Plant has got nothing, NOTHING, on us...

Wrapping up the deal with Warner Brothers now--as soon as I explain the meaning of "thick air" we'll be set with a lucrative contract...just enough to pay for the bus.

Looking into hiring SDH, Dire, High Flow and McGlone as roadies, especially since the four of them will be capable when push comes to shove and we need some beef to deal with the violent sorts that will gravitate to our sound. Tigerbolt, Bluedevil and Strat will be recruited to serve as soundmen/techno support cast, and I figure the Doc and GoP can write up some of our PR trash for getting the word out.

Diana has already assured me that all of our live recordings will be featured here at LMA in a special subsection in which everytime someone streams us using MediaPlayer we will automatically be credited with a substantial credit card deduction from the listener's account...

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Poster: direwolf0701 Date: Feb 5, 2008 8:51am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

"Looking into hiring SDH, Dire, High Flow and McGlone as roadies, especially since the four of them will be capable when push comes to shove and we need some beef to deal with the violent sorts that will gravitate to our sound."


awwwwww - i dont get to play :(

i could easily sit there with my acoustic and just shout at you "Have you got it yet?"

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Poster: Stealz Date: Feb 4, 2008 5:39pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

Can I get a gig in the vault once there's enough material to constitute one?

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Poster: William Tell Date: Feb 4, 2008 6:03pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

Hey, once we play it, we're done with it.

But, trust me, we'll change our minds, and Stealz, if there was ever an appropriate title for the position, YOU have it! You can be in charge of making sure that we get our money's worth coming and going...Pretty soon, we'll be playing just to support you and all your relatives--but that's as it should be...you were here for us in the beginning, and that's what counts.

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Poster: Ellis Van Sofa Date: Feb 4, 2008 6:42pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

i hear some ex-wives are already threatening lawsuits.

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Poster: L.A. Women Date: Feb 4, 2008 7:01pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

Ive even tried to turn a couple people on to that album so its not like I hate it. In fact, it was the first album of theres I borrowed from my older brother back when I was first listening to them so I must have liked it enough to venture forward.

I don't know what kind of influence it has with the younger generation, speaking for myself I know a decent amount of people that like floyd but they all think that album is a terrible.... while it is pretty much general consensus that wish you were here was a great album.

So you could thank Syd for that, since he was the influence for that album and all.

Has anyone heard the story of when they were recording that album and he walked in while they were doing a session and they didn't even recognize him at first. I'm pretty sure I read that Syd was less than impressed by what they were playing, so I guess he shared your sentiment.

This post was modified by L.A. Women on 2008-02-05 03:01:11

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Poster: William Tell Date: Feb 4, 2008 7:11pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

Yeah, have heard that--pretty sad. And yes, you are defn right that folks that like PF almost always don't have much good to say about the first two albums. I was coming more from the impact I saw at the time in northern CA; that first album really shook folks up--everyone talked about it, were devasted at the show in SF in which Syd wigged out, etc., etc.

Cool to kick it around, whatever our respective take on it; thanks.

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Poster: L.A. Women Date: Feb 4, 2008 7:29pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

Right on. I actually gained a little more admiration for Syd today, I didn't know that it was he that played slide guitar on "remember a day". I really like that song and his slide work is what really makes it it poignant.

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Poster: Kryssy Fields Date: Feb 5, 2008 8:47am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

Can't wait to Stage Dive during a Bertha.

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Poster: jglynn1.2 Date: Feb 5, 2008 7:46am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahah

That is funny . . . it looks suspiciously like someone I know who happens to be a great guitar player.

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Poster: Stealz Date: Feb 4, 2008 3:55pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

William Tell said, "They were not ever popular, nor necessarily talented (except for Jerry and Hunter, Lesh...)"

I'm going to avoid the "talent" aspect of the discussion because I am no judge on musical talent, unless judging talent is done on a purely emotional level and we all know it's not.

However, as far as the "popularity" of the Grateful Dead, well, I would think one would have to define "popularity" as it relates to music. The generally accepted terms of popularity within the music industry are the pop(ular) charts and album sales, the latter determining the former. By this criteria alone, I'm not of the opinion that the Dead were a very popular band during the majority of their career (considering 1965-1995).

A simple "grateful dead gold and platinum albums" google search, though, turned up a RIAA article dated 09/04/2001. An excerpt from this article:

"Predominantly known for their incredible live performances rather than their studio recordings, the Grateful Dead made Gold and Platinum strides this month as well. "American Beauty" was certified double Platinum®, "Europe '72" was certified Platinum® and subsequently double Platinum®, "What A Long Strange Trip It's Been" was certified both Gold and Platinum while "Live Dead" reached Gold status. In all, the band has earned 16 Gold®, six Platinum® and four Multi-Platinum™ albums totaling over 16 million units."

This, along the immense touring popularity and fan devotion, makes me think they were and remain a very "popular" band. Perhaps more popular today than ever before.

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Poster: William Tell Date: Feb 4, 2008 4:06pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

Good point, Stealz; suppose this is part of the difficulty of the semantics--"popular" vs "influential" and I was lumping it in the latter category. But, in the end, years later, it probably does = popularity.

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Poster: northstar dead Date: Feb 4, 2008 3:18pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

I am sorry WT, but to say the Dead were not popular nor talented as a whole is a bit, well, fucked up

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Poster: William Tell Date: Feb 4, 2008 3:55pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 'Influence' vs 'Popular' (DEAD)

Well, they certainly were never popular in the sense of top forty, or that sort of calibration...and though talent is a tough row to hoe, discussion wise, I would say that it was certainly not thru vocal talents or musician ship per se that they found our hearts. That doesn't mean that they are not "important" and in that spirit I would say that the DEAD surpass virtually all other bands of the day.

Isn't that enough?